Sorare the official NFT fantasy game of Major League Soccer


Digital and collectable fantasy football company Sorare have partnered with Major League Soccer (MLS) to become their official non-fungible token (NFT) fantasy provider.

Paris-based Sorare is a sports blockchain company that allows players to trade official digital collectibles while ‘making cryptocurrency fun and accessible through fantasy football.’ Players can collect, trade and play fantasy football with tokens representative of the real-life performance of the professionals on the pitch.

Launched in 2018, Sorare already count Spain’s La Liga and Germany’s Bundesliga among their portfolio, and hold individual licences for clubs including Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus. Barcelona veteran Gerard Pique is a strategic advisor, while investors include Antoine Griezmann, Rio Ferdinand and Cesar Azpilicueta. The MLS partnership follows the opening of Sorare’s North American office at the end of last year, made possible by a Series B funding round that saw the company’s value rise to $5.7 billion AUD in September 2021.

“We are excited to welcome Major League Soccer as our latest partner. Our global community of sports fans are eager to start collecting and playing with their favourite teams and players from the league,” Sorare Chief Operating Officer Ryan Spoon said.

“From collectors to first-time NFT buyers, our NFT x fantasy model uniquely engages fans with the sport they love in a way that goes beyond just spectating, and makes them feel truly connected to each team, player and game.”Investment in Sorare’s September funding round was led by Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, with their chief executive Marcelo Claure joining Sorare’s board of directors. Venture capital companies Atomico, Bessemer Venture Partners and D1 Capital Partners were among other investors, with the round netting Sorare $908 million AUDFollowing the acquisition of La Liga’s NFT rights in the same month, the company announced their intention to hold the rights for world football’s top 20 leagues by the end of 2022. Whether this could also include Australia’s A-Leagues competition remains to be seen, however Australian Professional Leagues Managing Director Danny Townsend told Soccerscene in February that the league was exploring entry into the NFT Fantasy space.“This is an emerging proposition all sports need to engage with and develop an understanding of, especially with the pace it’s moving at. One thing we’ve noticed through the fantasy process is the NFTs, or tokenisation, of fantasy competitions is coming to the forefront,” Townsend said.

“What we don’t want to do is build an analogue fantasy product knowing there is a digital one right around the corner. We were way down the road on a fantasy product to launch this year and we’re still committed to doing that, it just may be a different form to include a degree of tokenisation.”

Serie A to stay on DAZN and Sky screens to 2029

DAZN and Sky will retain the rights to broadcast live Serie A matches in Italy for the next five seasons after Italian clubs accepted bids worth at least 4.5 billion euros ($4.8 billion).

After four months of discussions, the Serie A teams convened to examine final bids from streaming services DAZN and Sky, which totalled around 900 million euros each year until the conclusion of the 2028/2029 season, barely below the existing agreement’s yearly worth.

Seventeen of the 20 clubs backed the offer but the decision drew sharp criticism from Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis.

“It’s a total defeat for Italian football, these deals will be the death of Italian football. The problem is being a borrower or an entrepreneur. The entrepreneur must know how to measure the risk area, it is more convenient but this will never implement the value of Italian football”, he stated via press release.

Serie A earns around 930 million euros every season from the sale of its TV rights in Italy under a three-year contract that expires next June, with DAZN once again taking the lion’s share. DAZN will exclusively carry seven Serie A games each week (266 out of 380 matches per season). The remaining three will be carried by DAZN and Sky (114 matches per season).

In recent months, Serie A explored the creation of a media platform to distribute matches to other TV outlets as well as the launch of a home-run live video subscription service.

Torino chairman Urbano Cairo was all for the deal claiming the league was correct to continue the partnership.

“Figures were below our initial expectations and below our current contracts, but I think we were right to continue our relationship with Sky and DAZN. Creating a Serie A TV channel now, would had meant adding further risk to a risky business he stated via press release,” he told reporters.

When some variable components tied to revenue sharing are included, the new contracts may match or even exceed the value of the present contracts and reach 1 billion euros.

Strategic Plan 2023-2026 launched by Football West

Football West Strategic Plan

Football West recently announced the launch of their 2023-2026 Strategic Plan, a documentation affiliated with Football Australia’s One Football Strategy that will set the direction for football in Western Australia for the coming years.

The plan will see Football West improve the game under five essential departments:

  • Participants and Clubs
  • Elite Teams and Pathways
  • Fans
  • Unifying Football
  • Asia and the Sam Kerr Football Centre

Participants and Clubs

The first pillar has the aim to make Football the most accessible sport in Western Australia where everyone can play anytime, anywhere.

There are key targets set such as: Increase registrations by 5% per annum, increase participation by 3% per annum and have 95% of clubs and associations with a completed affiliation agreement (presently 82%).

Another key focus is the development of women and girls football which isn’t surprising after the recent Women’s World Cup success. Football West set a goal of 42,500 additional women & girls playing football across the three year plan.

Elite Teams and Pathways

This pillar focuses simply on the development of talent at all ages in a bid to improve the quality of the game in Western Australia.

The focus areas are Delivery of a state-wide Football West Academy program, Frequent and consistent talent identification opportunities and High quality coach development pathway


Football West is focusing on optimising the fan experience and grassroots to improve attendance numbers and social media engagement.

Unifying Football

They will develop a resourcing model that allows for the servicing of responsibilities between Football Australia and Football West, formalised in a Service Agreement

Asia and the Sam Kerr Football Centre

Football West will look to improve international exchanges with Asian countries and use the Sam Kerr Football Centre to secure sponsorships and play big matches there by 2026.

Football West Chairman Sherif Andrawes mentioned the vision that the federation has for the future of football across all levels.

“We are excited to present the Strategic Plan to the WA football community. This is a vision that will see football move forward in tandem with Football Australia but with a strong WA focus,” Andrawes said in a statement.

“Football is in a great position across the state. We saw during the FIFA Women’s World Cup and, more recently, when the CommBank Matildas played in Perth, that our sport is unique in its widespread appeal. This passion can be felt across all areas of the game.

“We want to be bold and ambitious, and the Strategic Plan gives us a strong base from which to deliver on that.”

Football West CEO Jamie Harnwell was excited to announce how the Strategic Plan would be implemented successfully.

“This Strategic Plan is a real statement of intent and one we are proud to deliver. Harnwell mentioned in a Football West statement.

“Football is more popular than it has ever been in Western Australia, in terms of participation, inclusivity and popularity, and we should all be proud of this. However, we cannot rest on our laurels.

“As a governing body, we want to make our game even more accessible, so we can inspire a new generation to love football. That comes through hard work, consultation and direction, all of which are key to the Strategic Plan.”

The Strategic Plan is well set out and focuses on the current struggles the federation is having at grassroots level. Partnering closely with Football Australia will help them achieve the ambitious goals set out to improve both the state and national foundation.

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